Roof mounted bike?

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Roof mounted bike?

Postby GraemeL » Sun Nov 25, 2012 1:15 pm

Well I did it, I bought a Thule 591 roof mounted bike carrier.

The reason for the purchase is because I now have my adult son back at home, he has Huntington's Disease and I care for him full time. Although he has what is called Chorea, which is similar to the shaking Parkinson's patients have, he is able to ride a bike just fine and joins myself and the wife on weekend rides.

In the past I have been using an iSi Town & country, to carry our two bikes, it is just the bees knees. It is easy to load and unload the bikes etc. But we also go camping and I wanted my son to be able to join us for bush rides, I have a setup on top of our trailer for our MTB's but had no way of carrying a third bike, so the roof mounted option suites us, although it's a bit of a struggle getting the bike up there.

I have always been dead set against them because I have heard a lot of horror stories of people forgetting the bike was up there. So I have set up a little system to remind me the bike is on the roof, I have made two signs, one is a triangle shape and on one side has the word Bike in large letters. I use this on the dashboard of the car, when I have the bike on the roof, I have the word Bike looking at me, when it not there I just turn the sign over. The other one is an A4 sized sheet which is laminated with the word Stop. We have an archway at the top of our driveway and when the bike is on, this is hung from that to remind me I need to stop before going under it.


Do you have a roof mounted rack, if so, what measures do you take to remind you the bike is up there?

Graeme
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by BNA » Sun Nov 25, 2012 1:37 pm

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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby AUbicycles » Sun Nov 25, 2012 1:37 pm

It is a very real fear at thought of all of that carbon, steel or alumnium squashing while the roof of the car peels back like a tin of sardines.

One think I considered was a mirror angled correctly so you can see the car and anything on top in good time.

Or you could go high- tech with a proximity sensor which beeps like a reversing truck and sounds automatically and only when there is something on the room rack.

The final suggestion is a poor-mans solution, record an audio cd with the words "your bikes are on the roof" and then set the CD to repeat. I realise that this solution does have its drawbacks.
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby GraemeL » Sun Nov 25, 2012 1:48 pm

Well I don't need a mirror, I have an electric glass sunroof. I had thought about opening the roof when the bike was on, the wind noise would serve as a reminder.

I must admit, I am a little paranoid about the bike being wiped out. It has the potential to do some real damage, both to the car and the bike.

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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby greyhoundtom » Sun Nov 25, 2012 2:11 pm

Talking about roof racks for bikes...........I still can’t understand why someone has not designed and marketed a roof mounted system that included the option to lay the bikes down after they were secured if it was only one or two bikes.
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby Benz250 » Sun Nov 25, 2012 4:37 pm

greyhoundtom wrote:Talking about roof racks for bikes...........I still can’t understand why someone has not designed and marketed a roof mounted system that included the option to lay the bikes down after they were secured if it was only one or two bikes.


So do you reckon you have it designed and manufactured before I go on Chrissy holiday, need the 2 bike model!!
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby Mustang » Sun Nov 25, 2012 6:10 pm

We have carried two bikes on the roof for some time.
Tip: Measure your height for servos & low bridges.
We also store the garage door opener in the glove box when bikes are on top, along with sticky notes.
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby bigfriendlyvegan » Sun Nov 25, 2012 6:49 pm

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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby bychosis » Mon Nov 26, 2012 7:29 am

I don't use a system, but next time will be measuring the height. Got a few scares driving into servos etc remembering the bike was on top but not knowing the clearance. I did have to remind my wife to stop before driving into the garage once, she asked why, I pointed to the roof... 'oohhhh'. My car lives outside so it's not a big issue.
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby boss » Mon Nov 26, 2012 8:05 am

AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"
AUbicycles wrote:"your bikes are on the roof"



So on and so forth.
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby gorilla monsoon » Mon Nov 26, 2012 11:11 am

Note stick on the dash saying: BIKES ON ROOF!" and also have overall vehicle height noted on it as well.
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby master6 » Mon Nov 26, 2012 11:31 am

I have tried the note on the dash and windscreen, but still forgotten it at the critical moment and driven under a (too) low tree.

I WII NOT put my carbon bike on the roof. The steel training bike is the biggest risk I am prepared to take.

An aerial like that used by mining companys, and off roaders in sand dunes could be the best answer.
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby AUbicycles » Mon Nov 26, 2012 11:35 am

bigfriendlyvegan wrote:Apps:
Physical sensor system:
http://www.headsupsystems.com/


Exactly - $169 US for peace of mind and probably the most failsafe solution for the home garage.


At one stage in my design work I set an repeating alarm on my computer that said 'Save your work' every 15 minutes which was pretty helpful (just a sec.. gotta Apple S now).
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby GraemeL » Mon Nov 26, 2012 12:45 pm

Thanks for the tip about measuring the height, that is something I had not considered. I had only been thinking about driving under the arch and into the carport.

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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby wombatK » Mon Nov 26, 2012 1:59 pm

bigfriendlyvegan wrote:Physical sensor system:
http://www.headsupsystems.com/

Forget about saving the bikes, why haven't the RMS rigged up something like this to stop the
drongo's who've been driving their truck-mounted excavators or elevated platforms etc.,. into
the M5 East Tunnel roof once every few weeks ???
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby bigfriendlyvegan » Mon Nov 26, 2012 2:21 pm

wombatK wrote:
bigfriendlyvegan wrote:Physical sensor system:
http://www.headsupsystems.com/

Forget about saving the bikes, why haven't the RMS rigged up something like this to stop the
drongo's who've been driving their truck-mounted excavators or elevated platforms etc.,. into
the M5 East Tunnel roof once every few weeks ???


Good point...Dear BO'F...
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby SmellyTofu » Mon Nov 26, 2012 2:38 pm



Need more.
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby RonK » Mon Nov 26, 2012 4:30 pm

Of the half-dozen or so incidents I know of, only two of them occurred at home entering the garage - the rest mostly occurred at shopping centre carparks and height gates. And nearly all involved experienced cyclists, one a bike shop employee, another a bike shop owners wife.

It's really only a matter of time, notes and signs won't save you from that moment of distraction.

Best thing might be to put a tall antenna on the front of the car when you are carrying bikes.

Good luck.
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby bychosis » Mon Nov 26, 2012 9:56 pm



These things only work at home, my scares have been on the road - Remembering not to drive through at the fast food joint etc.
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby GraemeL » Tue Nov 27, 2012 7:52 am

RonK wrote:Of the half-dozen or so incidents I know of, only two of them occurred at home entering the garage - the rest mostly occurred at shopping centre carparks and height gates. And nearly all involved experienced cyclists, one a bike shop employee, another a bike shop owners wife.

It's really only a matter of time, notes and signs won't save you from that moment of distraction.

Best thing might be to put a tall antenna on the front of the car when you are carrying bikes.

Good luck.


Hopefully it won't be a matter of time. When the bike is on the roof, the wife will also be in the car, so if it does happen I can blame her for not reminding me :wink:

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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby RonK » Tue Nov 27, 2012 9:52 am

GraemeL wrote:When the bike is on the roof, the wife will also be in the car, so if it does happen I can blame her for not reminding me :wink:

Hehe - gool luck with that too. :lol:

But thinking about it, it occurred to me that a thin cord from the handelbar over the bonnet to the front of the car, perhaps with a small streamer tied to it, might be a useful as a warning. The angle of the cord may remind you that there is something on the roof.
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby Byke » Wed Nov 28, 2012 10:52 pm

A friend of a friend has driven into his own garage not once, not twice, but three times with carbon bikes atop his car. He has now rigged up his own audible alarm and flashing lights system, but if he's already done it three times it's hard to believe he won't do it again at the servo / drive through / shopping centre even if he doesn't do it at home.

I have another friend who twice failed to properly secure her carbon bikes using the Thule 591 rack system, and they fell off the roof at speed. Her excuse was she was pregnant at the time…
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby il padrone » Wed Nov 28, 2012 11:02 pm

Don't do it.

Not worth the grief and regret. I speak from experience :cry:
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby GraemeL » Thu Nov 29, 2012 7:54 am

Byke wrote:A friend of a friend has driven into his own garage not once, not twice, but three times with carbon bikes atop his car. He has now rigged up his own audible alarm and flashing lights system, but if he's already done it three times it's hard to believe he won't do it again at the servo / drive through / shopping centre even if he doesn't do it at home.

I have another friend who twice failed to properly secure her carbon bikes using the Thule 591 rack system, and they fell off the roof at speed. Her excuse was she was pregnant at the time…


Geez, I would have given up after the second time.

I also was a little worried about the security of the bike when on the rack. I secured it per the instructions, but noticed a fair bit of wobble, I haven't had a chance to drive with the bike up there as yet, but I must say I was surprised at just how much movement there is. It is not loose, it's just not rigid.

il padrone wrote:Don't do it.

Not worth the grief and regret. I speak from experience :cry:


I am already regretting it, but for now this is the only way to carry 3 bikes, ecspecially when we go camping. Later on, I may relegate this to camping only and look at adding an extension to my iSi Town & Country.

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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby SmellyTofu » Thu Nov 29, 2012 8:36 am

I'm sorry and I don't mean to offend but you guys sound like a bunch of goldfish. I've never had a problem having bikes up above and always aware of the height. Wearing bike clothes and gloves whilst driving is a dead giveaway not to mention driving to the load conditions.
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Re: Roof mounted bike?

Postby RonK » Thu Nov 29, 2012 8:49 am

SmellyTofu wrote:I'm sorry and I don't mean to offend but you guys sound like a bunch of goldfish. I've never had a problem having bikes up above and always aware of the height. Wearing bike clothes and gloves whilst driving is a dead giveaway not to mention driving to the load conditions.

To be added to the compendium of famous last words :) :) :)
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